'

CSIRO wants to bring order to its law

The CSIRO, Australia's largest scientific research association, has issued an Expression of Interest (EOI) notice this week seeking vendors to provide a new legal matter management software system for its legal department, but representatives are remaining tight-lipped on the contract.

The CSIRO, Australia's largest scientific research association, has issued an Expression of Interest (EOI) notice this week seeking vendors to provide a new legal matter management software system for its legal department, but representatives are remaining tight-lipped on the contract.

The association's procurement unit has stated that it is seeking a commercial off-the-shelf software package for its legal team, and will be accepting EOI's until the end of January 2008.

While EOI documents state that the CSIRO is looking for an existing product "to support the ongoing management of the organisation's legal affairs", it is understood that the association will -- at the least -- require a number of modifications to the software, as well as interoperability with other programs such as Outlook and SAP software.

"At the moment we're just exploring the market to investigate what kind of systems are around that might suit the EOI's specifications," said a CSIRO spokesperson.

"We're trying to keep things reasonably broad and remain open to possibilities," said the spokesperson.

According to documents accompanying the EOI notice, CSIRO's legal department is responsible for a number of services which any proposed software package would have to comply with. Some of these include litigation and dispute resolution, intellectual property management, regulatory compliance and collaborative research.

The document states that currently: "There is no IT supported CSIRO-wide software platform in place to enable CSIRO's legal team to systematically organise and manage its legal matters."

The software will also have to support the work of a number of other partner firms co-opted by CSIRO legal such as Mallesons, Minters and AGS.

The organisation is seeking the new system to cut down on duplication and will require that it has the capacity to provide each lawyer with an individual profile "to ensure that the potential for double entering of data and details is avoided".

Lodgement of Expressions of Interest for the provision of the system are required by 31 January 2008.

CSIRO declined to put a figure on the budget for the system.